VETERANS DAY

Pursuant to 5 USC § 6103, Veterans Day is November 11 each year.

GMUSL has a special commitment to serving our country’s veterans. Since 2004, the law school has provided a Clinic for Legal Assistance to Servicemembers and Veterans (CLASV):

The clinic enables Mason law students to represent servicemembers and veterans in a wide variety of litigation and non-litigation matters. Since its inception, clinic students have assisted over 70 clients from all five branches of the armed services, in litigation, adjudication and negotiation regarding consumer protection, administrative and military law and entitlements (TSGLI, PEB Boards and discharge upgrade appeals), family law, bankruptcy, immigration, landlord-tenant, contract, estate and entitlement matters in federal and state forums.

Students interested in CLASV will find additional information here. For more information about Veterans Day, please see the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Website.

 

Congratulations Graduates

The law library staff congratulates George Mason University School of Law Graduates!

Please remember that library services continue to be available to you after graduation. Student IDs are valid through October 6, 2014—so recent grads may reserve study rooms, check out books (until Sept. 30), and use the computer labs.

The library is open to the public for conducting legal research, so please feel free to use our print resources and publicly available databases (includes in-library access to Keycite, Shepards, Bloomberg Law, and Westlaw Patron Access Terminals). Reference librarians are also happy to assist you in person, by phone, or via email.

Best of Luck Class of 2014!!

grad

ABA Law School Accreditation Process

The United States Department of Education has recognized the American Bar Association, Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar as the accrediting agency “in the United States of programs in legal education that lead to the first professional degree in law . . . .”  See also 34 C.F.R. § 602 (explaining the DOE’s recognition of accrediting agencies). George Mason School of Law was approved by the ABA in 1980.

Under the ABA Rules of Procedure for Accreditation of Law schools, fully accredited law schools are subject to a site evaluation every 7 years. A team of evaluators reviews materials provided by the law school and then conducts a 3-day site visit. These evaluators typically includes a law librarian (see ABA Standards for Library and Information Sources).

George Mason will host an ABA team of evaluators, led by Dean Brad Toben (Baylor Law School) on Sunday, March 30 through Wednesday, April 3, 2014. They will hold an open meeting for students on April 1, 5:00-6:00, in Room 215. Students are welcome to contact Dean Toben directly if they cannot attend the open meeting. The Site Team will be using Hazel Hall Room 314 as its base of operations. You may also contact Dean Toben through his office number: 254.710.1911, fax 254.710.1799, or email at Brad_Toben@baylor.edu.

More information is available in a brochure titled,The Law School Accreditation Process and the current ABA Standards and Rules of Procedure for Approval of Law Schools Both these resources are on the ABA website.

Veterans Day

Pursuant to 5 USC § 6103, Veterans Day is November 11 each year. GMUSL has a special commitment to serving our country’s veterans. Since 2004, the law school has provided a Clinic for Legal Assistance to Servicemembers and Veterans (CLASV):

The clinic enables Mason law students to represent servicemembers and veterans in a wide variety of litigation and non-litigation matters. Since its inception, clinic students have assisted over 70 clients from all five branches of the armed services, in litigation, adjudication and negotiation regarding consumer protection, administrative and military law and entitlements (TSGLI, PEB Boards and discharge upgrade appeals), family law, bankruptcy, immigration, landlord-tenant, contract, estate and entitlement matters in federal and state forums.

Students interested in CLASV will find additional information here.

 

 

 

GMU Law Library and BLSA Celebrate Black History Month

February is Black History Month. The theme for 2013 is “At the Crossroads of Freedom & Equality: The Emancipation Proclamation and the March on Washington.” This year marks the 150th Anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation (January 1, 1863) and the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom (August 28, 1963).

GMUSL’s Chapter of the Black Law Student Association (BLSA) and the Law Library have partnered to honor these important events in American History. Please take a moment to view a special presentation in the library display case near the atrium.

Black History Month was founded by the Association for the Study of African American Life & History (ASALH) at Howard University.  For more information, visit the ASALH website.

Early GMUSL Supporter Joe Allbritton Has Died at Age 87

Joe L. Allbritton made his fortune in media and banking, including ownership of eight television stations, the Washington Star Newspaper, and Riggs Bank.  He also played a significant role in the founding of George Mason School of Law.

Allbritton was a board member of the International School of Law (ILS), which became GMUSL when it merged with the university in 1979.  In the mid 1970s, the Kann’s Department Store in Arlington became available for purchase when the business closed. Allbritton signed a personal promissory note to secure a $3 million dollar loan to purchase the building and adjoining 14 acres.

Here is a 1979 photo of then law school Dean Ralph N. Norvell standing in front of the first law school building:

Dean Ralph Norvell

George Mason University , “George Mason University School of Law Dean, Ralph N. Norvell in front of the School of Law building ,” A History of George Mason University, accessed December 13, 2012, http://ahistoryofmason.gmu.edu/items/show/192.

 

Veterans Day 2012

Pursuant to 5 USC § 6103, Veterans Day is November 11 each year.  Because this date was a Sunday, the holiday for Federal employees is observed today. All GMU Law Library services are following a normal Monday schedule: the library is open 8:00 AM – 11:00 PM, Reference Services will be available 9:00 AM – 9:00 PM.

GMUSL has a special commitment to serving our country’s veterans. Since 2004, the law school has provided a Clinic for Legal Assistance to Servicemembers and Veterans (CLASV):

The clinic enables Mason law students to represent servicemembers and veterans in a wide variety of litigation and non-litigation matters. Since its inception, clinic students have assisted over 70 clients from all five branches of the armed services, in litigation, adjudication and negotiation regarding consumer protection, administrative and military law and entitlements (TSGLI, PEB Boards and discharge upgrade appeals), family law, bankruptcy, immigration, landlord-tenant, contract, estate and entitlement matters in federal and state forums.

Students interested in CLASV will find additional information here.

 

 

GMU Libraries Launch “George Mason University: A History”

The University Libraries’ Special Collections and Archives recently launched a digital exhibition exploring the history of George Mason University. The exhibit “contains seven exhibits representing eras in the University’s development, featuring digitized documents, photographs, video, audio, and other artifacts from the University Archives.”

Items of special interest to the law school community include documents and photographs related to the merger of GMU and the International School of Law that created GMUSL. And here’s a photo of Hazel Hall’s namesake attorney John T. “Till” Hazel in front of the old law school building, circa. 1987:

Hazel

The “Scholarly Impact” of Law School Faculty

A University of St. Thomas School of Law (Minnesota) professor and three of the school’s law librarians have authored a citation analysis of scholarly writing by faculty in the “top third of ABA-accredited law schools.” The authors calculate a “Scholarly Impact Score” based on “the mean and the median of total law journal citations over the past five years” by tenured members of each law faculty.

George Mason School of Law is tied for 21st with Boston University. The most cited faculty members are Professors Bernstein, Butler, Claeys, Greve,  Kobayashi,  Lund,  Mossoff, Muris, Somin, and Zywicki.

The paper, titled Scholarly Impact of Law School Faculties in 2012: Applying Leiter Scores to Rank the Top Third, is available on SSRN here.

 

The Future of Law Reviews

An article by Walter Olson in the Atlantic titled Abolish the Law Reviews! adds another chapter to the debate about the value and future of scholarly legal journals.  Membership and publication in a law journal no doubt remains a valued credential.  But will this continue to be the case?  Olson posits that the real future for valuable academic scholarship is the blawgosphere and other virtual forums.

Olson also cites GMUSL’s Professor Ross Davies’s report, Law Review Circulation 2011: More Change, More Same.  Davies finds that diminishing subscriptions “have ranged from near-freefall to mere steep-slide.” He notes that in the last year “no major law review had more than 2,000 paying subscribers.”

One positive aspect of the law review saga is the growth of freely available content. Many journals—including those produced by so-called “top tier” law schools— make at least the most recent issue of their publication available free online.  Here are some resources for locating this content:

  • ABA Legal Technology Resource Center.  Search more than 400 online full-text journal/law reviews and related sources, including Congressional Research Service Reports.  Coverage varies.
  • BePress.  Browse or Search over 90 law journals published in the Digital Commons open access repository.
  • Dragnet. Browse or search approximately 150 law journals that provide free online content, including their most current issue.  Searches may be limited to International or Environmental Law.
  • Google Scholar.  Limits Google search to academic journal articles, conference papers, dissertations, theses, indexes articles and abstracts from major academic publishers.  Coverage and access to full-text varies.
  • Social Science Research Network (SSRN). Widely used by scholars to share papers and articles in several topical networks.  Legal Scholarship Network includes over 130,000 papers searchable by keyword, title, author or date.